Back to: Contemporary India and Education – Unit 5
The Right to Education Act (RTE) is enacted to make the right to education a fundamental right in the country. It marks a watershed in the Indian education system and that is why it is essential legislation. In August 2009, Parliament passed the act, and came into force in 2010. Following this, India became one of the 135 countries that have made education a fundamental right of every child.
Under Article 21 A of the 86th Constitutional Amendment (2002) in the Indian Constitution,
“The State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of 6 to 14 years in such manner as the State may by law determine.”
The main challenges in the implementation of the RTE ACT, 2009 in India are as follows:
Ignorance by Parents
Despite the government’s efforts to offer free and compulsory education, many people living in remote areas still ignore sending their children to school.
Lack of Coordination
There is a lack of coordination between the local community and the educational institutions which leads to issues in universalizing elementary education.
An Attitude of Indifference
There is an air of indifferent attitude by the higher authorities which leads to a lack of effort in the universalization of elementary education.
Lack of Funds
There is an inadequacy of funds which leads to a lack of learning resources and materials.
Even though education may be free, there are still some expenses parents have to incur and those belonging to a poor social class may therefore refrain from sending their children to school.
Lack of Resources
Even with the government’s provision of learning resources, it continues to be inadequate for quality education.
Lack of Motivation
Those who belong to a poor socioeconomic economic background may not consider education to be important. They motivate their children to work instead of becoming educated.
The Act envisages that the academic curriculum must be developed according to the values enshrined in the Indian Constitution. It should foster the all-round development of the child. The educational system must be both child-centric and child-friendly.